General News, Obama, Opinion

Artist Behind The Barack Obama Portrait Has Set Social Media On Fire

Image Source: Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery

A lot of buzz has been made about Barack and Michelle Obama’s portraits that were unveiled at the Smithsonian Museum at the National Portrait Gallery, and although Leftists were gushing over the “powerful” statement that the lush foliage encroaching on Barack Obama was making and the “striking” contrast of colors of Michelle Obama’s dress, the rest of the world was having a good and hearty laugh.

That’s because, as far as former President Barack Obama’s portrait goes, it looks like he is sitting on the throne in a bathroom and it looks like he’s being absorbed by the bushes. One clever commenter remarked that it was pretty funny that Obama was being towered over by a Bush (a reference to his predecessor). Some were questioning whether or not the backdrop was the Ivy at Wrigley Field or if the plants were a subtle reference to certain herbs that Obama has admitted to have partaken during his Choom Gang days. Finally, the Internet was chuckling over the fact that the lighting on Obama’s Left hand makes it look as though he has a sixth finger.

As far as Michelle goes, social media observers were confused because the painting seemingly doesn’t look anything like Michelle Obama. Commenters were having a field day by agreeing that the best portrait of Michelle Obama is a portrait of somebody else.

The best Tweet regarding the Michelle Obama painting has got to belong with the Daily Wire’s Ben Shapiro:

While the Obama portraits provided a week’s worth of comedy fodder, the real story is about the man behind the Barack Obama painting.

Kehinde Wiley, an African-American painter, has made headlines after becoming the first African American to paint an official portrait of a United States President. However, it’s two of his previous works of art that are causing people to ask why the artist was selected to be the one to paint Obama.

The paintings depict a black woman holding the decapitated head of a white woman, and Wiley explained, during a 2012 New York Magazine interview, that he was trying to create a contemporary look for the biblical story of Judith beheading Holofernes.

Wiley says that the black woman in one of the paintings was actually a stay-at-home mother that he discovered in the Fulton Mall. Her name is Triesha Lowe. It gets even weirder when Wiley admits that the decapitated white woman’s head in the painting is actually one of his assistants. He says,

“It’s sort of a play on the ‘kill whitey’ thing.”

The Left has tried to pass this off as just another example of an overreaction to art that people don’t understand, but the emergence of these two paintings begs two questions:

Number one: Would the media be just as happy if a painter were to paint a white woman decapitating a black woman with the artist shrugging it off by saying, “It’s sort of a play on the ‘kill blackey’ thing?”

Obviously, the answer is no, and the media would be screaming that it was a sign of how racist and evil white people in America are.

Number two: Given that these “provocative” paintings were in his portfolio, why exactly was Wiley selected to paint the portrait of Barack Obama? For this, we have only speculation based on 8 years of evidence from an administration that never missed an opportunity to pit groups against each other.

Tell us what you think about the Obama portraits and Wiley’s earlier works.


Sources: The Daily Caller, New York Magazine, Yahoo! Entertainment

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